Panel discussion: Richard Rohr, Cynthia Bourgeault, William Paul Young


If you can’t detach from your own ego, you are attached and this is trouble. The ego is almost untouchable. One of the safest ways the ego uses to avoid God is God language.

Salvation = moving from the economy of merit to the economy of pure grace. God is not interested in mathematics. God does not count. We were raised on counting, measuring, calculating. Until God dips you in the ocean of unearned love, unearned forgiveness, you will not get it.

We live in a worldview of scarcity. There is never enough. And it is killing us. Until you have been dipped in this ocean of infinite flow, you can only understand measuring; you cannot live in abundance.

This world we are living in is devolving because it has no notion of grace. Our personified notion of grace is the Trinity.

Mystery is not something that is not understandable; mystery is something that is infinitely understandable. We never come to the end of it, never contain it, or exhaust it. You will never have this God in your pocket.

The Trinity is not a win lose God. This is a win win God. If you have never tried to live in a win win universe, you are going to lose your walls, your explanations, your container.

CB: The “Two guys and a bird” thing did not originate with me. I think it came from Elizabeth Johnson.

I know two people who woke up in the middle of the Trinity. One of them was a predictable thing – a Vietnamese born Christian trappist monk who had absorbed a lot of the stern God in the sky image and taken on all the judgmental language. One day he woke up in the midst of a mystical dream in which he found himself in the flow of the most delicious sweetness which was everything. It was a watershed moment that changed his nature, making him completely forgiving of everything and able to enter into everything. He said, “It is just all love and every part is connected.”

The other person who woke up inside the Trinity was a woman who had been in the Regan cabinet. She had always been hard and practical-minded. She woke up in the middle of the Trinity and everything shifted. She found herself dynamically immersed in a field that wasn’t an idea but was a living dynamic radiating field of love. The box flew apart and she began a long journey. It shifted the way she was present in the world.

When we break through into the Trinity in that way, we need to touch it and live in it and swim in it and drag others into it.

I want to situate the prophetic work we are doing this weekend in the midst of a stream and in the midst of the unusual context.

When I read The Shack I felt plunged into this living stream of love. How do we language and live in the frame in which this living dynamic action of love in a world that is turning a corner.

For me it is all about love and healing. We are being led forward stumbling and broken but wanting to move forward in love.

[To William Paul Young]: How was it that you saw the image of forgiveness? What made you think that it had to be a Trinity that delivered this healing?